Friday, June 12, 2009

Food for the Hungry in Myanmar

Since I've often mentioned Food for the Hungry here, I thought I'd point you to a post Matt shared with me on John Piper's blog about FH's involvement in Myanmar. Desiring God ministries is helping to mobilize FH support in the area devastated by last year's cyclone, and you can be involved by contributing financially (and by praying!). Read the post.

As a side note, I thought it was interesting that Piper mentions the rat population in Asia as one of the contributing factors to hunger and poverty. I have just finished reading founder of Gospel for Asia K.P. Yohannan's book Revolution in World Missions. (I kept remarking to myself in the margins that "Brother K.P." and Piper would be bff...) Yohannan explains that the problem of hunger in Asia is, above all, a spiritual one. He writes:

"Most people know of the 'sacred cows' that roam free, eating tons of grain while nearby people starve. But a lesser-known and more sinister culprit is another animal protected by religious belief--the rat. According to those who believe in reincarnation, the rat must be protected as a likely recipient for a reincarnated soul on its way up the ladder of spiritual Nirvana. Although many Asians reject this and seek to poison rats, large-scale efforts of extermination have been thwarted by religious outcry. Rats eat or spoil 20 percent of India's food grain every year...Clearly, the agony we see in the faces of those starving children and beggars is actually caused by centuries of religious slavery."

(A tangent to my tangent: I remember having a similar thought about Japan when I wandered through a temple with my host family four years ago. Suddenly I realized that for a nation that claims it is not religious, Japan is actually steeped in idolatry. The presence of Shinto and Bhuddist temples and household shrines prove it. But in Japan, this bondage has brought a harvest of materialism and nationalism rather than poverty...)

I'll be writing more about Yohannan and Gospel for Asia in a coming post...but I thought I'd leave you with that lovely vision of Asian rats today. It has made me, for one, prayerful about how I can contribute to the spiritual and physical needs in Asia. And I'm so thankful for men like Piper and Yohannan who expose the needs to our materially and spiritually saturated American culture...and cause my heart to be a little heavy over my addiction to the saturation.

1 comment:

ZealousEcho said...

I ordered that book today. Sometimes your writing makes me cry, chels. I can't wait to get out of bloomington and see the entire world. Its gonna happen one day. and I meant what i said in my comment on your last post!